by on May 14, 2018
It’s taken months to pull together a vote to save net neutrality from the FCC guillotine, but the moment is finally upon us. Senate Democrats announced today that they’ll force a vote to keep net neutrality protections in place on Wednesday, May 16. Support in the chamber is just one vote shy of passing the resolution, but Democrats see a win no matter what the outcome. Last December, the Republican-led Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal Title II protections that preserv...
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by on May 12, 2018
With constant surveillance and technological advances, could the U.S. see the rise of an omnipresent social credit system? It’s one of those Black Mirror episodes that blurred the lines between fact and conjecture. “Nosedive,” the season three premiere of the popular sci-fi TV series, follows Lacie, a prim, proper woman who’s obsessed with how the world views her, as she struggles to maintain her social rating. In her society’s social scoring system, each pleasant personal interacti...
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by on May 7, 2018
Joining a federal task force means being deputized as a federal officer, which allows state and local cops to ignore local limits on surveillance. By joining joint law enforcement task forces run by the federal government, local cops can often ignore stringent state and local laws governing surveillance and engage in warrantless spying. It's well-known that a federal program known as “Equitable Sharing” allows local prosecutors and police to bypass more restrictive state asset forfeitu...
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by on May 5, 2018
Cell tower interceptors, often called "stingrays" or "dirtboxes," mimic traditional cell towers. A coalition of civil rights and immigrant advocacy groups has penned a letter in support of a state bill that would force California police and sheriff agencies to disclose all of their surveillance gear, as Oakland this week approved similar requirements through what may be the strongest city surveillance ordinance in the country. Supporters say they believe the legislation will propel oth...
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by on May 3, 2018
Samples and a swab containing DNA sample on genetic testing results. The state Attorney General’s Office recently asked a Manhattan judge to dismiss a lawsuit seeking to nullify New York’s familial DNA testing policy, saying the plaintiffs in the case lack standing to bring the complaint and the concerns outlined in it are “fully speculative and hypothetical,” according to court documents. Plaintiffs Terrence Stevens and Benjamin Joseph, Bronx and Westchester residents, respectively, f...
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by on April 6, 2018
  In today’s installment of "I’m Not Terrified, You Are," Bloomberg Law reports on a FedBizOpps.gov posting by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) with the relatively benign-sounding subject “Media Monitoring Services.” The details of the attached Request for Information, however, outline a plan to gather and monitor the public activities of media professionals and influencers and are enough to cause nightmares of constitutional proportions, particularly as the freedom of the press i...
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by on March 22, 2018
Robert Mueller’s team has taken over the investigation of Guccifer 2.0, who communicated with (and was defended by) longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone. Guccifer 2.0, the “lone hacker” who took credit for providing WikiLeaks with stolen emails from the Democratic National Committee, was in fact an officer of Russia’s military intelligence directorate (GRU), The Daily Beast has learned. It’s an attribution that resulted from a fleeting but critical slip-up in GRU tradecraft. That foren...
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by on March 20, 2018
Facebook is having to face the music both in the United States and the United Kingdom after The New York Times and The Observer of London revealed Cambridge Analytica received and employed data harvested from 50 million of the social network's users without their permission. The Federal Trade Commission is launching an investigation.  NYT:  The F.T.C. investigation is connected to a settlement the agency reached with Facebook in 2011. The agency had accused the company of deceivin...
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by on February 24, 2018
In the future imagined by the Department of Homeland Security, an army of small drones will hover over the southwestern border, outfitted with facial recognition technology that can cull criminal histories of people on the ground. Advanced cameras will instantly identify drivers and passengers as they cross international bridges into Mexico. Artificial intelligence software will comb through the social media accounts of immigrants seeking to enter the country. U.S. Border Patrol agents wa...
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by on February 11, 2018
Facial recognition technology is improving by leaps and bounds. Some commercial software can now tell the gender of a person in a photograph. When the person in the photo is a white man, the software is right 99 percent of the time. But the darker the skin, the more errors arise — up to nearly 35 percent for images of darker skinned women, according to a new study that breaks fresh ground by measuring how the technology works on people of different races and gender. These disparate ...
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by on February 9, 2018
Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney, former staff secretary to President Clinton, talks with Rachel Maddow about the access of the staff secretary to highly confidential information, and the Trump administration's surprising lack of action despite knowing Porter's issues. source
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by on February 9, 2018
UK lawmakers visiting the US didn’t pull any punches at a Washington DC hearing on fake news today. “Isn’t Facebook a massive surveillance operation?” asked conservative MP Rebecca Pow. Members of the UK House of Commons’s digital, culture, media and sport committee called US tech companies to George Washington University today, questioning representatives of Facebook, Alphabet, and Twitter, as well as academics and journalists on the general topic of fake news. Brexit on their mind ...
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